Transforming your hobby into a business

businessDo you have a hobby, craft, or skill that you can transform into a career? Many of us dream of abandoning the 9-5 in favour of following our dreams, and it needn’t be as daunting as you expect! In this article, we’ll look at the steps you can take to create a business from your hobby.

Test the waters

As a first step, take a look at the market you’ll be working within. Is it easy for new entrants to make their way in, or are there barriers you’ll have to overcome to find your place? If there’s groundwork you have to do, such as training or certification, fit it into your current schedule so that you’re ready to start as soon as possible.

It’s also a good idea to test your ability to deliver products or services that you’ll be able to make money from. Focus on presentation, high quality, and the features that will make you unique. Produce samples and send them out; take feedback on board and make improvements before you jump in.

Network

Are there events at which you can show off your talent or speak to people in the industry? Make sure that you’re there. Order business cards with an eye-catching design and hand them out to the right people. Think of every networking event as a chance to prove yourself. Even the most innocuous conversation can lead to a life-changing opportunity!

Negotiate a good deal

If you require supplies or new equipment to kick-start your business idea, ensure that you get the best deal. Shop around to find suppliers offering the perfect mix of great quality and a fair price, and obtain samples if you can. Don’t be afraid to haggle; many suppliers will be willing to negotiate, particularly if you’re making a bulk or regular order. Use your business nous at every stage of the process.

Planning is everything

To run a business successfully, you need to be well-organised. Consider whether the resources you have will be sufficient to meet your expected demand. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software is the perfect tool to analyse your current and future capacity, and provide insight into how you can better allocate your resources to meet business goals. You don’t need to own a large business to benefit from this powerful software; even small businesses in their infancy will gain useful guidance to get off to the most productive start.

Get your name out there

Once you’ve decided to take the leap into the world of entrepreneurship, it’s time to shout about it! Harness the power of the web and construct a compelling online presence. Start with a well-designed website; it’s your corner of the internet to customise as you see fit. Create useful and informative online content that persuades visitors to make a conversion. Set up social media accounts to display your products and services, and encourage friends and family to get involved with sharing and promotion.

Making the decision to turn your hobby into a business takes courage, determination, and a dash of creativity. Taking these tips on board, you’ll soon be enjoying a brand new career!

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